Posts Tagged ‘LSI Brighton’

Language Learning Tips from LSI Brighton

Monday, March 17th, 2014

Michael Choguill director at LSI Brighton

Michael Choguill

Michael Choguill is currently school director at LSI Brighton but is also the leading light behind the provision of online tuition for professionals which is now available on the lsi website.Clearly Michael knows a lot about teaching English and is full of good advice for students.

Tip 1.

Many students think that they need to speak quickly in order to show others that they speak English well. This is not actually the case. Of course, we would all like to speak our second language at the same speed and with the same fluency as our native language but this is not always possible. There are many factors involved in speaking well: accuracy, vocabulary range, pronunciation and so on. If a student tries to speak quickly without taking these into account, the result is often difficult to understand.  Understandably, students want results quickly so it is important that we are all very clear about which results are achievable. My suggestion is very simple: slow down! There is no reason and little benefit in speaking a second language at break-neck speed. Teachers and students should work together on broader issues relating to good speech with an aim to improving intelligibility, in other words, speaking so that others can understand easily (and even enjoy listening!). Focus on intonation (the rise and fall of the voice for effect), stress and timing (for emphasis), joining up strong and weak words, pitch and rhythm. For many centuries, these characteristics were considered very important for good speaking, and today, good speakers still employ these techniques.

Tip 2.

When I ask new students what they think they should learn in class, many will answer: “Grammar”. This is absolutely fine. Without a good grasp of the grammatical system of a language, a students’ accuracy will be poor, and their ability to progress limited. However, the approach we take to teaching and learning grammar is important. If an intermediate student says they have to learn the Past Perfect, I will usually ask them why they think so. I do not usually receive a clear answer. Often this is because the student knows that the Past Perfect exists (it is in most course books and is often an item tested in traditional language exams). Unfortunately, they don’t know what to do with it in real life. They spend a lot of time studying the rules and doing exercises but when they are having a real conversation in English, they don’t use it or use it inappropriately. I suggest turning things around. We should encourage students to think about the real-life functions of grammatical structures. If a student needs to spend a lot of time talking about sequences of past actions and being very clear about the exact order of events then they need to use the Past Perfect (this is not something most students need to do very often). If the students want to talk about their regrets or the things they have failed to achieve they need the Past Perfect (hopefully, not such a common occurrence).  Basically, we need to teach grammar and students need to learn it, but it is essential that they understand how to use it and that they relate what they learn to practical situations rather than to theoretical ones.

‘Certificate of Good Conduct’ required for Group Leaders accompanying Under 18s to the UK

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

All LSI UK schools accept students from ages 16 years and upwards and in addition LSI London Hampstead, LSI London Hampstead Residential (King’s College), LSI Oxford and LSI Cambridge accept students from 13 years and upwards on our summer English for Juniors course. Presently any group leaders that come with a group are now required by law to demonstrate their suitability to work with children by  providing a Police ‘Certificate of Good Conduct’ or ‘ Certificate of Criminal Record’ from their country of residence.

The UK schools have been informed by the British Council Accreditation Body that in cases where leaders arrive at the schools without the appropriate checks completed, the group leaders will only be able to have limited access and responsibility for their students and any additional supervision will be undertaken by the school staff and thus may result in additional costs for the group. LSI therefore stresses to all the groups we work with the importance of obtaining the necessary documentation before arrival.

Important Annoucement : TOEIC tests have been suspended in the UK

Friday, February 7th, 2014

LSI have received notification from the Educational Testing Service (ETS), the international body that administers the TOEFL and TOEIC exams, that TOEIC tests will be suspended in the UK until at least March 7. The TOEIC test scores are commonly used by applicants to demonstrate English language proficiency to the UK Visa an Immigration Office. ETS has been asked to suspend any further testing as a result of an on going investigation by the UKBA about the potential abuse of this testing system by some test takers.

Any students/test takers who have booked a TOEIC test at one of our UK schools will therefore have the test cancelled and the exam fee will be refunded. LSI will keep our students informed as to when the TOEIC will be resumed and students will be able to reschedule  the exam. LSI apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause. All other English language test (TOEFL, IELTS and the Cambridge Language Assessment examinations) remain unaffected by the UKBA decision.

 

Recent Changes to the Tier 4 General Student Visa for students wanting to study in the UK

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

The UK Border Agency have recently announced the following changes for students wishing to study in the UK using the Tier 4 General Student Visas. These changes came into affect on April 21st 2011.

  • Only Grade A and Highly Trusted Sponsors (such as LSI )  will be allowed to issue CAS’s (confirmation of acceptance for studies) to students
  • School tests and skype interviews will no longer be accepted as proof of level. Students must have a valid exam certificate from the proscribed list, or have taken a Secure English Language Test (SELT) at a recognised exam centre. SELTs will also be made available at some consulates and embassies. The UKBA site have more information about the SELTS. Level requirement for Tier 4 visas will stay at Intermediate B1, ready to study at B2
  • Students on Tier 4 visas will no longer be allowed to work in the UK while studying at language schools.
  • All language schools will have a limited number of CAS’s available for students until April 2012. Therefore, LSI will issue only one CAS to each student.
  • A new Extended Student Visitor Visa has been introduced for Highly Trusted Sponsors. Language school students will now be able to apply for a Student Visitor Visa for up to 44 weeks at LSI.

Interactive whiteboards making language learning at LSI even more fun!

Friday, November 5th, 2010

LSI UK  has been busy investing in the latest classroom technology,  installing interactive whiteboards in the classrooms. These new additions to the classrooms have been warmly welcomed by both teachers and student alike.

Noah Fisher using the whiteboard

Noah using the whiteboard

Noah Fisher, a teacher at LSI London Hampstead, is a very keen proponent of the electronic whiteboard and has even provided training sessions in its use for other members of staff. “Interactive whiteboards are just great! Thanks to the amazing range of media that can be accessed from the Internet , it allows us teachers to be able to provide a much richer learning experience using the whiteboards. Apart from just being more visually appealing than the usual paper based resources, I find that the students become more engaged when sharing, discussing, even interacting with texts using the Interactive Whiteboard. It really seems to pull them into the tasks. ”

Ana Cristine, an LSI Hampstead student from Brazil, is in total agreement with Noah. “When we work with texts on the normal whiteboard I never finish writing down it all down before we move to the next topic but with the interactive board you can easily go back to previous exercises. Also the teacher is able to use lots of colours to highlight texts which makes it more interesting to look at as well as making each mark more distinct.”

LSI now has interactive whiteboards in all its UK schools at London Central, London Hampstead, Brighton and Cambridge. Learning a language has never been so much fun!

A great course! The verdict of our Young Learner Courses from one student’s family

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010

LSI has been successfully running Young Learner courses at our schools in London Hampstead, Toronto, Brighton and San Diego for two years and for 2010 we have also introduced a campus programme at Chichester. These courses are proving to be increasingly popular with record numbers booking the courses this summer. Below you can read some recent feedback that we have received from the family of one of our students on our London Hampstead Young Learners Course.

Laura Navadijos Peral wrote the following to school director Greg Wickline, ” I would like to thank you and congratulate you for the quality of the study programme your school has offered my nephew Jorge Calvo Navadijos. Jorge finished a two weeks young learners course on Saturday 24th of July and he has repeatedly told us how happy he has been with the classes. Jorge has greatly appreciated having more than one teacher every day with different styles and accents and he has found that the rhythm and the exercises were very fresh and different from the methodology he has always followed in his home country Spain.”

Laura continues, ” From my side, his uncle and his family in Spain we would like to thank you for making us feel he was in safe hands. We felt he was given the protection that was needed at his age and level of English and we sense he has not felt overprotected. Greg, from my first interaction with you a few months back I had the feeling we were choosing the right school and I am glad we were right. We will recommend your school wholeheartedly to our friends in England and Spain with children in similar ages and situations.”

We thank Laura for taking the time to give us feedback on our Young Learners Course and for the helpful suggestions she has made to improve the course even further. It’s great to know when we have happy students!

English UK invites LSI teacher to speak at Annual Conference

Wednesday, October 29th, 2008
James Munday, Director of Studies at LSI Brighton

James Munday, Director of Studies at LSI Brighton

English UK, the prestigious national association of accredited English language centres, has invited James Munday, the Director of Studies at LSI Brighton, to present a talk and workshop at their annual conference in London this November. Although more accustomed to the less daunting environment of the classroom, James has nonetheless presented workshops and seminars for various institutions during his teaching career, and relishes the opportunity.

“It is a real privilege to be invited to speak at such an event. Teachers come to this conference from all over the UK and it will certainly raise the profile of LSI, speaking volumes for the academic excellence we endeavour to develop here. Developing motivation in the classroom is not an easy challenge for teachers and students to meet, but I hope that by sharing some of the tips I have researched over the years everyone can leave the conference with something positive and useful”.